Yes, your dreams are coming true! Finally someone has made a Low Fat Lasagna with Meat Sauce! 416 calories per serving with only 11g of fat, 38g of carbs, and a whopping 40g of protein per serving! See nutritional details below.
The main way we reduce fat is by using the leanest ground beef, fat free cottage cheese instead of ricotta, and reduced fat part skim mozzarella. Now, I know 70% of you saw cottage cheese and thought, “Nope, this is not for me!” But wait! I despise cottage cheese, but I can promise you that you will LOVE this recipe. It feels like ricotta and tastes like a delicious garlicky, herbed cheese mixture. Plus, fat free cottage cheese packs a mean punch of protein with NO fat!
When preparing the sauce, it is important to stir often. It is a thick sauce which will hold together nicely when cutting the lasagna. However, thick sauce means it is susceptible to burning in the pot if left on heat too long without stirring.
When assembling the lasagna, it is important the oven ready noodles don’t overlap or touch the sides of the casserole dish. The noodles require room to expand while baking. I use about 3 oven ready lasagna sheets per layer. This casserole has 3 layers – totaling 9 pieces of oven ready sheets. This is what the nutrition information is based on.
- Precooked lasagna noodles (about 9-12 noodles)
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese (for sprinkling on top)
- 1/4 cup shredded part skim mozzarella (for sprinkling on top)
- 1lb extra lean ground beef (96% lean)
- 1/2 large onion, diced
- 2 medium carrots, small dice
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 14oz tomato sauce, no salt added
- 14oz diced tomatoes, no salt added
- 4oz tomato paste
- 4 tbsp all purpose flour
- 1 tbsp dried Oregano
- 1/2 tbsp dried Basil
- 1 tbsp dried Thyme
- 24oz fat free cottage cheese, blended until smooth
- 3 large eggs, beaten
- 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/2 cup reduced fat part skim shredded mozzarella
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 tbsp dried Oregano
- 1/2 tsp dried Basil
- 1/2 tbsp dried Thyme
- Salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 400° F (or as otherwise indicated by oven ready lasagna noodle instructions).
In a large, deep bottom skillet, brown ground beef over medium-high heat. Add onions to sauté with beef until they begin to soften. Add herbs and garlic – cook until fragrant (about 1 minute). Mix in tomato paste then flour and cook about 2-3 minutes in order to cook out the raw flavors. Stir in remaining tomato products. Bring to boil then reduce to simmer for 10 minutes stirring often. The meat sauce will be quite thick, stir often to avoid sticking and burning at the bottom of the pot.
Prepare cheese mixture. Combine beaten eggs, garlic, herbs, salt and pepper, mozzarella, and Parmesan. Stir through blended cottage cheese until thoroughly combined.
Layer lasagna in 3 sections.
Section 1: begin with a thin layer of sauce at bottom of casserole dish so noodles do not stick. Layer lasagna noodles (try not to overlap or touch sides of casserole dish – noodles will expand while cooking). Spread on 1/3 of the cheese mixture. Spread on 1/3 of the meat mixture.
Section 2: layer noodles, half of remaining cheese mixture, half of remaining meat mixture.
Section 3: layer noodles, remaining cheese mixture, remaining meat mixture.
Top with extra shredded mozzarella and Parmesan cheese.
Bake covered at 400° F for 35 minutes. Uncover and continue to bake 5-10 minutes until cheese it browned and bubbly. Let cool at least 5 minutes before cutting to serve.